This film examines the process of holography, types of holograms, and the uses of the hologram for artistic and scientific purposes, as demonstrated by Tung H. Jeong, PhD, Lake Forest College. About the film, director Tom Smith writes: "Nobel Prize winner Dennis Gabor, holography’s inventor, saw the film after it was made and said it was the best film on the subject that he had seen. It is such a visual subject it made for a good film. I knew the 3-D quality could only be appreciated if... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: Physics., Photography., Light.
This PSSC film utilizes a fascinating set consisting of a rotating table and furniture occupying surprisingly unpredictable spots within the viewing area. The fine cinematography by Abraham Morochnik, and funny narration by University of Toronto professors Donald Ivey and Patterson Hume is a wonderful example of the fun a creative team of filmmakers can have with a subject that other, less imaginative types might find pedestrian. favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 6 reviews ) Topics: physics, science, PSSC
The Black upper middle-class Myers family moves into all-white Levittown, PA in August, 1957, and are snubbed and mistreated, in this powerful landmark documentary showcasing racism in the United States. favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: african-american, black, racism, housing, urban
Far more than a travelogue with pretty pictures, this little-known film won six international awards shortly after its release. 'Iran' consists of spectacular geographical and archaeological footage interspersed with "slice of life" shots, evidencing best juxtapositional editing we've ever seen. This is a buried masterpiece from the director of 'A Man and a Woman,' 'Happy New Year,' and 'And Now My Love.' Lelouch reportedly shot six miles of footage to make this film, which apparently... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 2 reviews ) Topic: Persia, Petroleum, Qashqai, nomad, Islam, mosque
A dramatization of a Roman boy's friendship with a slave in his father's household. Depicts, through the young boys' experiences and activities, the way of life and customs of ancient Rome. Some dialogue in Latin. This film was one of three made by Encyclopaedia Britannica Films' Bill Deneen utilizing the sets from Samuel Bronston's epic 'The Fall of the Roman Empire.' This 'Claudius' was actually one of two released concurrently by EB, one with and one without dialogue in Latin, and is... favoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: Encyclopedia Britannica Films, William Deneen, Samuel Bronston, Latin dialogue
Bruce and Katharine Cornwell are primarily known for a series of remarkable animated films on the subject of geometry. Created on the Tektronics 4051 Graphics Terminal, they are brilliant short films, tracing Klee-like geometric shapes to intriguing music, including the memorable 'Bach meets Third Steam Jazz' musical score in ‘Congruent Triangles.’ In this melding of art and science, the Cornwells create a quasi-hypnotic take on a mathematical construct. More on the Cornwells at... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 4 reviews ) Topic: mathematics, science
A parable about the consequences of being a bystander to evil, from a disturbing poem by Maurice Ogden, read by Herschel Bernardi. Shadows and shifting geometric planes lend a Chirico-like quality to Julian's animation. Great musical score by Serge Hovey. About the film, Steve Goldman writes: "Les Goldman was my father. Creating this film was one of the most important accomplishments of his life. He was inspired to make this film after hearing the poem 'Hangman' read on Pacifica Radio in... favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 5 reviews ) Topics: animation, death, horror
'Magicians of India' (1940?) 10m, uncredited director. This gem combines the best in colonialist attitudes with some truly amazing magic from the fakirs shot in real-time with no edits (we can't figure how they do it either). Topics: magicians, India, fakirs, street performers
Shows the San Jose Mercury News of 1970 in all elements of production. Briefly shows the IBM 1130 mainframe computer (http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/1130/1130_intro.html) favoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: publishing, media
Alienation, angst, and schizophrenia are powerful themes addressed by Kearney in this forgotten masterpiece. From a story by Conrad Aiken. favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 16 reviews ) Topics: schizophrenia, teen angst
Lisl Weil, a dancer who often performed in New York with friend Tommy Scherman and his Little Orchestra Society, was also a splendid charcoal artist. Here, accompanied by Sherman’s musical interpretation of the Paul Dukas classic, she soars across the screen, drawing abstract characters on a massive blank board in a timeless, fun film that juxtaposes wonderfully with the better-known Disney treatment in 'Fantasia.' favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: charcoal, dukas
An adaptation of the short story of the same title by Walter Van Tilburg Clark, in which four men who have survived a catastrophic war share memories of their past lives and a civilization which no longer exists. Here, a vintage recording of Debussy's Nocturne played by Walter Gieseking becomes the vehicle by which four lovers of the humanities hover together in a cold post-apocalyptic shack of sandbags to mourn weekly over lost art and loves gone by. Barnes, who must be considered among the... Topic: apocalypse
In this film, Deneen starred his wife and three sons (all uncredited), after he'd arranged a trade with Italian Lines for free passage for his family in return for a film about the liner S.S. Leonardo Da Vinci. Deneen states that 90% of the shots were filmed on the Da Vinci, and another 10% were filmed aboard the S.S. Michelangelo on his return voyage. The film is a remarkable children's film as well as serving as an important document of one of the most advanced ocean liners of its day, now... favoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: academic film, bill deneen
Here, a 25 ton block of granite being burned, drilled, and blasted from the heart of a Vermont mountain, focusing on the machinery used. Filmed at the Rock of Ages Quarry in Barre, VT. For more on filmmaker Carson Davidson, visit http://www.afana.org/davidsoncarson.htm favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: quarry, Barre
Johnson is another "lost" filmmaker, who worked out of Coronado, California. This film boasts beautiful color footage of old Baja, before Pemex stations lined the Cuota and Libre. Hunt travels from Ensenada to Cabo San Lucas, enchantingly stopping at the waterless village of Magdalena Bay, Tortuga Bay, and the vineyards at Santo Tomás. favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 4 reviews ) Topics: Santa Tomas, Magdalena, Tortuga, Baja, Cabo San Lucas, Ensenada
Using computer animation and pictures from NASA space missions, discusses the similarities and differences among the planets. Summarizes how the solar system was formed and why it is important to learn as much as possible about the other planets.
'Journey to the Center of a Triangle' (1976) 8m, dir. Bruce & Katharine Cornwell. Another fabulous film by the Cornwells, created on the Tektronics 4051 Graphics Terminal. Presents a series of animated constructions that determine the center of a variety of triangles, including such centers as circumcenter, incenter, centroid and orthocenter. The music is Bach's preludes 8 (Eb minor) and 12 (F minor) from the Well Tempered Clavier. More on the Cornwells at http://www.afana.org/cornwell.htm... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 5 reviews ) Topics: mathematics, science
Shows family life on a modern farm in winter. Describes the care and feeding of livestock kept on a farm in winter. Here, farm life continues at a vigorous pace, in spite of restrictions of inclement weather, as a farm family complete the work of harvest and prepare for the renewal of the growing cycle in spring. The story is told in first person by the grandfather, at Gerald "Red" Markham's farm near the town of Whitewater, Walworth County, Wisconsin. He tries to get the "snow...
Along with Larry Yust's 'Lottery', 'Clown' was possibly one of the two best selling ed films ever made. On the surface, it's a cute kid & dog story. Underlying is a possible subtext that fascinates us every time we view the film, and makes for a satisfying, yet ultimately ambiguous ending. Gilou Pelletier is outstanding as the small boy, and the camera work by Guy Suzuki takes wonderful advantage of the terraces of Montmartre. favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 2 reviews ) Topics: Paris, Montmartre, Dog, blind
The real star here is the late aerial photographer James Freeman, whose breathtaking helicopter shots of Mayan and Aztec ruins at sunrise and sunset won an Academy Award for this film in 1971. Although the English version was narrated by Orson Welles, the Spanish version, narrated by Ricardo Montalban, is in better keeping with the ethnic aspect of the film, and no knowledge of Spanish is needed to appreciate his dramatic impact. Don't be put off by the heroic musical score: this film is... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 2 reviews ) Topics: Maya, Aztec, helicopter, Chichen Itza, Monte Alban, Tulum, Toltec, Uxmal, Palenque
Here, manic Princeton professor Eric Rogers hosts, continually removing and replacing his eyeglasses, ordering around lab assistants --- he forcefully breaks a glass test tube in the hands of an assistant to demonstrate the inelasticity of water --- and furiously pounds equations on a blackboard (Leacock says the scribblings must have lasted 45 minutes, in what must be one of the more necessary cuts in the history of educational film.) Rogers finally conducts an experiment with a young girl,... favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 2 reviews ) Topic: Physics
To say Russell makes films on biology is sort of like saying Rodin threw some clay on a table and a few minutes later came up with a figure representative of a human. 'Light Microscope' starts out didactically (Russell was a former K-12 biology teacher) in instructing the student on proper microscope technique, then goes off into the hyperspace of lighting techniques, using light and colored filters, that make otherwise difficult-to-see phenomena visible. This film, frankly, borders on... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 3 reviews ) Topics: biology, science, volvox, hydra, amoeba
Explores the theories of Karl Marx and how they evolved as the major ideology of one third of the world. The production examines the roots of Marxism and carefully discloses the contradiction between Marx's hopes and today's reality. For more on director George Kaczender, visit http://www.afana.org/kaczender.htm
Presents an adaptation of the novel of the same title by D.H. Lawrence, about a young, sensitive English boy whose rocking horse empowers him to predict winning racehorses at the eventual cost of his life.
This is the first film in Barnes' 'Shaw vs. Shakespeare' series, considered by experts to be among the finest educational films ever made. Here is wonderful introduction to Barnes as an insightful and witty interpreter of Shakespeare on film, the opening film of the triptych focusing on George Bernard Shaw’s belief that, although Shakespeare’s play was superior to his own, the treatment of the character of Caesar was not. Shaw, as written by Barnes, prefers a Caesar whose... Topics: Geoge Bernard Shaw, Shaw, Shakespeare, Moffat, Kiley, Grossman
'The Fiddler' (1975) 20m, dir. Marshall Riggan. This amazing film showcases an elderly East Texas fiddle maker and his wife. After his hand-crafted fiddle is finished, we discover that he's an amazing country fiddler, too. This 'lost' film was produced by Riggan for a religious organization. Later, under new management, the organization apparently decided that the film was more profane than sacred, and discarded or destroyed all remaining prints. favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 4 reviews )
Examines the concepts of the entropy principle and of astronomical time, the relation of subjective and external time, and the definition of a second. Includes demonstrations of scientific timepieces and of the cyclotron. Features producer Milan Herzog in cameo role as the director of a space project. favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: afana, Herzog
byJohn Barnes; Encyclopaedia Britannica Educational Corporation.
Film dramatizes one of the best-known incidents in English literature - the Christmas visit of Mr. Pickwick and his friends to Dingley Dell Farm. In the large parlor, everyone responds to the cordial atmosphere and joyous capers of Mr. Pickwick. From the Pickwick papers. For more on filmmaker John Barnes, visit http://www.afana.org/barnesbio.htm Topics: Dickens, Christmas
This film documents the activities of newspaper staff members during a 24-hour period, showing how news is gathered and how it is written, edited, and printed. About the film,producer Tom Smith writes "The assignment was to make a film to show students how a newspaper is made. I chose to shoot a day in the life of the Los Angeles Times. It took a lot of preparation and on the day we chose to shoot, I had, three camera crews working at the same time. I was running from place to place. In... Topics: newspaper, Los Angeles Times
On Red Markham's farm near Whitewater, Wisconsin, son Steve tells his story: through the woods, taking a school bus, how muddy fields impact harvesting, canning jam, making jack-o-lanterns, and watching a dairy truck collect milk. About the film, director Tom Smith writes: " In the 1970s, the Markham family enjoyed national fame for a brief period when the popular children’s TV show, “Captain Kangaroo” aired film clips from these films on CBS network. Their names were not given when...
Follows contemporary American poet James Dickey on a three week lecture tour. Reveals the actual thoughts and feelings of the poet through his conversations and poetry readings. Topics: james dickey, poet
Directed by Gabriel Weiss. One of the strangest, fun, and perhaps most unforgettable films in the science genre was this, produced by University of California at San Diego chemistry professor Kent Wilson, and choreographed by Weiss’ future wife and 1969 America’s Junior Miss, Jackie Benington. After a short description of the interaction between “stars” 30s Ribosome, mRNA, and Initiator Factor One by Stanford’s Nobel Prize-winning Paul Berg, the camera moves to an open field at... Topics: protein, DNA, RNA
This outrageous parody of the prototype 'commercial' family was apparently made as an in-house joke by one of the largest producers of television commercials. Their clients would have never seen this gem, which parodies products as well as the people that buy them. favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 15 reviews ) Topics: parody, advertisement, asian
An old-timey set-up & projection techniques film, set in a school classroom. This film teaches the young projectionist how to put on a good show, and not trip over the cord while doing so. favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 2 reviews ) Topics: projector, 16mm, Bell & Howell
Sponsored by the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions, Bill Deneen traveled three days by bullock cart to the remote Keng Tung Leprosy Colony (today called Naung Kan) run by Father Cesare Columbo in Kengtung (Kyiang Tong), Burma. Intended to be used for fundraising, the film is a fascinating documentary about a humanitarian effort that would soon be terminated by the Burmese government. Shortly after the film was made, Columbo was deported, never to return. He is still fondly remembered by... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 3 reviews ) Topics: Burma, Myanmar, leprosy, Hansen's Disease, Cesare Colombo
byPhysical Science Study Committee.; Modern Learning Aids
Shows the four ways that light traveling in a straight line can be bent: by diffraction, scattering, refraction, and reflection. Refraction is illustrated by underwater photography. From the PSSC Physics series. For more info on PSSC, its history, and films, visit http://www.afana.org/psscfilms.htm Topics: pssc, physics
This film is an account of the Talyllyn Railway, a historic narrow-gauge slate carrier in Tywyn, Wales, and its operation by a preservation society who saved it from being sold for scrap. Although the release date is 1965, it was actually filmed in the early 1950s. Academic Film Archive of North America director Geoff Alexander visited the railway in June, 2009 as part of the process of preparing the film for uploading: "Opened in 1865, the Talyllyn railway was the first narrow-gauge steam... favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: train, narrow gauge, locomotive, Talyllyn
Tom Smith headed up the Special Effects team at Industrial Light & Magic, where he created all the goodies for the 'Star Wars' films. This is his academic film masterwork, which took over a year to create, over 13 weeks to film, and utilized "traveling mattes," with as many as five separate films running in the background, showcasing wonderful models and graphics. About the making of the film, Tom Smith writes: "I made that film in 1976 with Richard Basehart as narrator and a... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 2 reviews ) Topics: space, universe, Industrial Light and Magic, ILM
A 'new' version of the original of 1925, touting Santa Clara Valley's agricultural roots. Here we see the Clapp's Baby Food factory, the American Can Company plant, FMC, San Jose Steel, and Moffett Field, all accessible via the old Monterey Highway, or after arrival on the Coast Daylight steam locomotive-driven train. Topics: San Jose, Santa Clara Valley, Coast Daylight, Southern Pacific, FMC, Moffett Field
Castle Films, whose series ‘The Adventure Parade’ resulted in a number of commercially exotic films on ethnic traditions and cultures, actually utilized authentic music in this film, instead of the boring orchestral scores that were more typical of the era. Although the continued use of the term "these little men", and the embarrassing attempt to comically portray an older member of the group as a cynic seems condescending to present-day sensibilities, the faithful recording of... favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 2 reviews ) Topics: pygmy, Africa, Werner Herzog
Explains how Japan's rapid industrial growth has influenced the way of life in the country and has affected the international political and economic position of the country. Suggests that Japan turned to industrialization to support a rapidly growing population on a small and relatively poor land area. Deneen shot the aerial shots himself alone, while piloting a single-engine aircfraft, pointing the camera out the window. As an extra, Deneen appears on-camera in a 3:53 non-distributed film,... favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topic: Japan Asia, industrial
The 'Je Parle Français' series of French Language Instruction films was filmed in 1960-61 and produced by Encyclopaedia Britannica Film's Milan Herzog in conjunction with Otterbein College professor La Velle Rosselot, and Georges Matoré, Dean of the Language & Civilization Dept, Sorbonne. Rosselot was the prime educational consultant and curriculum developer for the film project. Her father was a history professor at Otterbein, and her brother Gerald was one of the founders of Scientific... Topics: Encyclopedia Britannica, Milan Herzog, Language Instruction, French
In the hands of another director, the inner-workings of a magnet laboratory could have caused a whole classroom to fall asleep of boredom. No so when Leacock was hired to produce this twenty-minute version of lab mayhem. Try this: six researchers in a lab at MIT in the late 1950's show-off the power of electro-magnets, and in the process, accidentally set an experiment on fire(Leacock says he did a retake without the fire, but preferred the immediacy of the fire sequence and kept it in). Or... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 4 reviews ) Topics: magnet, degauss, physics, science, PSSC, Leacock
In a touching tale a boy raises an orphaned baby kangaroo in the outback of Australia but due to events beyond his control is forced to return the animal to the wild. A film for animal lovers of all ages. Beautifully photographed and acted. A classic animal story. Awards: AUSTRALIA’S BEST CHILDREN’S FILM AWARD AMERICAN FILM FESTIVAL “CINE GOLDEN EAGLE AWARD” favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 4 reviews ) Topic: Bert Salzman
This film contrasts the peaceful pace of nature with the daily activity of society in order to show the importance of conservation. It promotes an appreciation of outdoor life by contrasting the separate activities of a California family in the city with their togetherness on a weekend camping trip in a primitive area. Photographed by John Lindstrom, it features the Harrang family. Topic: nature
In this film, made by Willis Simms' animation class at Hughes Jr. High in Woodland Hills, California, a bored boy in classroom fantasizes about wild animals. Animals sounds and the motor noise of the safari car are all provided by children's voices, which adds to the exceptional charm of this film. The adult appearing as the teacher is unidentified. For more on Simms, visit http://www.afana.org/simmswillis.htm Topic: student film
This film uses a large collection of paintings on the French and Indian War to offer a vivid and realistic picture of key episodes, places, and people. It explains some of the differences between French and English colonial policy and ways of life, depicting the battle for Quebec in detail, including the deaths of Montcalm and Wolfe.The script was written by noted novelist and screenwriter Elmore Leonard. Topics: french and indian war, US History, Encyclopedia Britannica